Many studies have suggested that the majority of the employees working from home are suffering from aches and pains. HR leaders are also now getting calls from employees regarding the physical problems the latter are facing. Even many employees have complained that sometimes the body-pain is so severe that they need to go for medication. All this cumulatively decreases the working hours, hampers productivity, and creates anxiety in employees’ minds.
One of the key things that HR leaders can do in this regard is that they can educate healthy “work from home practices” to employees. Many health experts have suggested that while working from home, employees may develop bad posture, which may result in neck pain, shoulder tension, and often recurring headaches. Therefore, educating employees about the body-posture while working would be a precise beginning.
Rounded or slumped shoulders are one of the most common signs of bad posture. It’s often a result of sitting at a desk and leaning forward over a computer. While working from home, this may have become worse as now employees are away from the usual office desk and chair, which are designed to help stop them from slumping over their computers.
Employees must be taught and encouraged to do some stretches at regular intervals. A good remedy is shoulder lifts: Employees should slowly lift their shoulders towards eyes as they inhale, then roll them back down while they exhale.
Forward head carriage often causes neck pain. It is also called “text neck” as it is associated with excessive use of mobiles. Hunching over a laptop while working from a sofa can also cause neck pain. Doctors say that the forward slant of the neck places more stress on the cervical spine, creating a muscle imbalance as the neck finds it harder to hold the head in this position.
Chin tucks are a good way to strengthen the neck muscles and HR leaders must often remind their team members to practice this. Employees must be told to keep their chin parallel to the floor. During video-conferencing too, employees must be told to place camera devices at such a position that they do not need to lean forward while talking.
Poor posture can lead to a muscle imbalance which results in pain throughout the back. Depending upon the posture, one may experience pain in different areas of your back. However, pain in the lower back is quite common due to bad posture.
Sitting up straight in a chair with hands placed on the thighs or armrests of the chair is a good posture to avoid back pain. Pulling shoulders back and squeezing the shoulder blades together and hold for five seconds is a good exercise to counter back pain.
These three major posture-induced pains can cause recurring headaches also. Frequent headaches can turn severe if not cured in earlier stages. And the best way to avoid headaches caused by working from home is to solve the bad posture problem. Therefore, HR leaders must take proactive actions to ensure employees’ don’t suffer posture-induced pain and their well-being is given due importance. With this, HR departments can convince employees to work from home as well as make sure that productivity does not decline.